Reply – Doug Schiller's Hornet Tiny-Mite restoration
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Doug Schiller's Hornet Tiny-Mite restoration
— by Brian Caruso Brian Caruso
 The “Tiny-Mite Sprint Car" also known as the “Hornet Tiny-Mite.” The “Sprint Car” version was originally conceived and built by Bud Gregory who owned a muffler shop in the Los Angeles area. He later sold or passed on the rights to manufacture the car to Ray Snow of Fresno, CA. Bud’s access to tube bending equipment naturally led him to integrate many tubing related curved pieces to the car’s design. Most obvious is the robust roll bar and the twin exhaust pipes that straddle each side of the car. Beneath the fiberglass body was a frame, built of much smaller diameter tubing, that was one continuous piece with but a single weld to close it. No rear suspension and a simple mechanical caliper/disc brake. Front suspension was by means of transverse leaf spring. This particular car had the springs removed sometime during its existence and the front axle was welded to the frame. The Bud Gregory version had a tail cone that did not include a tear drop headrest, while the later Snow version added the headrest. Ray Snow came out of WWII and opened a machine shop, where among other thing’s, he manufactured the small bore Hornet gasoline engines used in tether cars. Once Ray Snow took over manufacture he changed the name to “Hornet” Tiny-Mite reflecting the name of his machine shop. One of the most interesting things that Ray Snow did was to turn over the business of manufacturing quarter midgets, to his 3 children. They ranged in age from 8 to 18. The eldest did the fabrication and assembly of the cars in conjunction with his father, while the middle child, a young lady, was the bookkeeper and was responsible of ordering parts and inventory. The youngest, nicknamed “Frosty” Snow was the test driver. I paid tribute to “Frosty” by adding his name as driver to the cowl. The rakish appearance of the car was one of its most appealing attributes. There is no record as to how many of the “Tiny-Mites” were built by the combined group of Gregory and Snow. I recently spoke with a grandchild of Ray Snow, Jeff Barker, and was delighted to learn many more details about the Snow family and their involvement in the “Hornet Tiny Mite.”